G’day all, I hope everyone had a safe Christmas break and have started the New Year well. I haven’t been here for a couple of weeks, and by here I mean writing this column. I haven’t been anywhere in the true sense of the word, I just didn’t feel like writing and I will be honest and say that I am still struggling with the loss of my best mate last year, but that’s my issue and I will sort it out eventually.
Anyway what has been going on? I will mention the Darling River debacle only briefly, saying that what has happened is a tragedy and probably that it should have never happened, but is now history that it has. I don’t know what the answer is as to how to stop it happening again and I don’t know who is to blame, all I know is that we have to take all emotions out of the situation and work as a single unit to come up with strategies to minimize the possibility of it happening again. Like I said, just a brief interlude, not making light of the situation, I just don’t know how to stop it from happening again.
On a different note and a more positive one, I was listening to Pauline Hanson during the week and her inference that maybe there should be a bounty put on cane toads, when I had an epiphany. Instead of releasing a virus to reduce carp numbers, why not have bounties on carp? Now I usually don’t ask a question unless I have an answer and that answer could be right, wrong or indifferent, so what I thought was the following:
- A bounty of 5 - 10 cents per fish, much like return-and-earn.
- A time limit on “Carp Cancellation” of two years.
- The money that was/has gone/is going into studies of the carp virus be redirected to the “C.C.” program.
- Every carp that gets “registered” must be caught by a licensed fisherman and caught by rod and reel, and euthanized humanely.
- An incentive for fishing clubs/charities/non for profit agencies to have collection points in certain areas where transport – preferably refrigerated - can be contracted to take removed carp to a designated area for disposal.
- “C.C.” challenge events similar to the Pirtek fishing challenge, but have all monies from carp caught allocated to issues directly involved with fishing, i.e. Murray Darling sustainability.
These are just a couple of things that I have thought of, now these could be pie in the sky as I am just a mechanic and a part time writer of waffle, but I would rather have something like this than release a virus – that may or may not have a massive fish kill with no infrastructure to clean it up and therefore having another major native fish kill due to lack of oxygen because of decaying fish that were not removed from the water in time.
It will also create some part time or full time jobs within the fishing industry with increased patronage to tackle shops, marine sales and service (hopefully), petrol stations, camping industry and hopefully a full on flow effect for the broader community.
Now this is only my opinion and being the writer of a newspaper column is open to scrutiny and I am fine with that. But if it gets people thinking of how we can keep our river systems free from undesirables, I am happy with that.
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